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Los mercados de las rentas vitalicias en Chile. Competencia, regulación, ¿y miopía?


  • Walker, Eduardo

    (Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile)


Annuity rates in Chile (defined as the internal rates of return that equate the present value of expected payments to the premium paid by annuitants) are studied and related with industry competition. We document that: a) annuity insurance companies paying higher broker commissions paid lower annuity rates (or obtained lower financing costs); and b) there was a structural break in the long-run elasticity of annuity rates with respect to the risk-free rate in 2001, which coincided with the submission of a new draft pension law that proposed greater transparency in annuity markets and imposed a cap on broker commissions. We argue that the evidence is mostly consistent with the following joint hypothesis: i) The high commissions charged in the 1990s were partly returned to annuitants as informal (and illegal) cash rebates; ii) Myopic pensioners prefer cash rebates over present values. iii) Therefore the legal threat caused the drop in broker commissions, tightened the slack for cash rebates, increased competition via annuity rates, and raised the long-run elasticity to one.// Se estudia la tasa interna de rendimiento de las rentas vitalicias en Chile (definida como la tasa de interés que iguala el valor presente de las pensiones esperadas con la prima pagada por los pensionados), asociándola a la competencia en la industria. Se documenta que: a) las compañías de seguros que pagaban mayores comisiones de corretaje lograban menores costos de financiación; b) hubo un cambio estructural en la elasticidad de largo plazo de las tasas de las rentas vitalicias respecto a la tasa libre de riesgo pertinente en 2001, coincidiendo con el envío al Congreso de un proyecto de ley que pretendió hacer más transparente el mercado e imponer máximos a las comisiones pagadas a los corredores. Se arguye que las pruebas son estrechamente congruentes con la siguiente hipótesis conjunta: i) las altas comisiones cobradas en los años noventa eran ilegalmente devueltas de manera parcial a los pensionados por los corredores; ii) los pensionados miopes prefieren el efectivo a mayores valores presentes. iii) así, la amenaza legal causó la baja de comisiones, redujo la holgura para los pagos en efectivo, aumentó la competencia vía tasas de interés e incrementó la elasticidad de largo plazo para igualarse a uno.

Suggested Citation

  • Walker, Eduardo, 2009. "Los mercados de las rentas vitalicias en Chile. Competencia, regulación, ¿y miopía?," El Trimestre Económico, Fondo de Cultura Económica, vol. 0(301), pages 145-179, enero-mar.
  • Handle: RePEc:elt:journl:v:76:y:2009:i:301:p:145-179

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    Cited by:

    1. Jaime Casassus & Eduardo Walker, 2013. "Adjusted Money's Worth Ratios in Life Annuities," Documentos de Trabajo 434, Instituto de Economia. Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile..
    2. Varas, Felipe & Walker, Eduardo, 2011. "Optimal close-to-home biases in asset allocation," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 64(3), pages 328-337, March.
    3. Marco Morales & Guillermo Larraín, 2017. "The Chilean Electronic Market for Annuities (SCOMP): Reducing Information Asymmetries and Improving Competition," The Geneva Papers on Risk and Insurance - Issues and Practice, Palgrave Macmillan;The Geneva Association, vol. 42(3), pages 389-405, July.
    4. Roberto Rocha & Dimitri Vittas & Heinz P. Rudolph, 2011. "Annuities and Other Retirement Products : Designing the Payout Phase," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 2272, September.

    More about this item


    Annuities; Rentas Vitalicias; Chile; Emerging Markets; Pensions & Retirement Systems; Investment and Investment Climate; Non Bank Financial Institutions; rentas vitalicias; Chile; mercados emergentes; sistemas de pensiones y retiro; inversión y ambiente para inversión; instituciones financieras no bancarias;

    JEL classification:

    • D40 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - General
    • G11 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions
    • G18 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Government Policy and Regulation
    • G22 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Insurance; Insurance Companies; Actuarial Studies
    • G23 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Non-bank Financial Institutions; Financial Instruments; Institutional Investors
    • O16 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Financial Markets; Saving and Capital Investment; Corporate Finance and Governance


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